French TotalEnergies is investing an additional $1.5 billion to develop gas production in Qatar

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TotalEnergies has signed an additional $1.5 billion investment in the world’s largest natural gas field – ‘perfect timing’ says CEO Patrick Pouyanne as Europe seeks new energy sources to replace supplies Russians.

Qatari Energy Minister Saad Sherida Al-Kaabi announced the agreement with TotalEnergies CEO Patrick Pouyanne on Saturday.

TotalEnergies will own 9.3% of the North Field South project, Kaabi said, of which 25% will be reserved for foreign energy companies.

“Qatar Energy announces the selection of TotalEnergies as a partner for the development of the North Field South,” the official Qatari news agency QNA said. “New partners will be announced later.”

Kaabi said the French giant would also help finance gas extraction from North Field South and play an “enhanced strategic” role in Qatar’s gas expansion.

In June, TotalEnergies struck a $2 billion deal to participate in the giant North Field East project, which will help Qatar increase its liquefied natural gas (LNG) production by more than 60% by 2027.

“Perfect moment”

North Field LNG is expected to begin commissioning in 2026.

Since Russia cut off oil and gas supplies to much of Europe, European nations have scrambled to find alternatives.

Pouyanne, who said on Saturday the latest deal would require an additional $1.5 billion, said his company would have taken an even larger share of production if it had been possible.

“We definitely need new capabilities, and it will come at the perfect time,” he told reporters.

Other companies will be announced for the North Field South in the coming weeks, officials said, but TotalEnergies will have the largest foreign slice.

Qatar is already one of the world’s leading producers of LNG, alongside the United States and Australia.

State-owned Qatar Energy estimates that North Field holds around 10% of the world’s known natural gas reserves.

The reserves stretch under the sea into Iranian territory, where Tehran’s efforts to exploit its South Pars gas field have been hampered by international sanctions.

South Korea, Japan and China have become Qatar’s main LNG markets, but since an energy crisis hit Europe last year, the Gulf state has helped Britain with additional supplies and also announced a cooperation agreement with Germany.

(with newswires)

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